By Michelle Nowicki, Nutritionist
This recipe is great as a vegetable side dish and can be served warm, cold, or at room temperature. Bok choy is a bright green member of the cabbage family and is widely used in Asian cooking. It adds a nice flavor and crunch to any recipe. Bok choy is a good source of vitamins A, C, and K as well as folate and calcium. It is also rich in polyphenols – antioxidant phytochemicals.
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 3 medium bunches bok choy
- 6 spring onions (scallions), sliced diagonally
- 2 teaspoons chili garlic sauce
- 1 Tablespoon Thai fish sauce
- 1 cup coconut milk (unsweetened)
- 2 Tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1/4 cup crushed almonds
- Rinse the bok choy. Cut off the bottom most part of the stems – approximately 1/4 inch. Separate into individual leaves. If the white sections of leaves are very wide you can slice them in half lengthwise. Slice the bok choy diagonally into 1/2 inch sections. Separate the white sections from the green leaves.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a wok on medium and sauté the garlic until just golden brown. Transfer the garlic to a plate for later.
- Heat remaining olive oil and sauté the white sections of bok choy until just tender. Add the green sections of bok choy and the onions and continue to sauté until the green bok choy starts to wilt.
- Add the chili garlic sauce, fish sauce, coconut milk, lime juice and garlic (that was previously set aside). Stir and heat until the sauce warms. Taste and add more garlic chili sauce if you desire. Remove from the heat.
- Serve on a platter and garnish with crushed almonds.
Yield: approximately 8, 1/2 cup servings (will vary with size of bok choy)
Key Ingredient Benefits
Almonds: Almonds are high in monounsaturated fats, the same type of health-promoting fats found in olive oil, which have been associated with reduced risk of heart disease. Additionally, almonds have a high protein concentration. A quarter-cup contains 7.62 grams – more protein than is provided by the typical egg, which contains 5.54 grams.
Bok Choy: Bok choy is a member of the cabbage family and is a good source of vitamins A, C, and K, as well as folate and calcium. Bok choy is lower in oxalate – which binds up calcium and prevents it from being absorbed – than most other leafy greens. Therefore, the calcium in Boy choy is more readily absorbed than many other leafy green vegetables. Bok choy is also rich in polyphenols – antioxidant phytochemicals.
Coconut Milk (Unsweetened): This beverage is an excellent source of calcium, vitamins D & B12. It also contains medium chain fatty acids (MCFA), which are easily digested, absorbed, and put to use nourishing the body. Unlike other fats, they put little strain on the digestive system and provide a quick source of energy necessary to promote healing.
Garlic: This mighty bulb can protect us in many ways. It contains sulfur compounds that may protect cells from cancer, relax blood vessels and improve cardiovascular health. Research suggests garlic may help boost our cellular antioxidant production. There is some evidence supporting numerous health benefits from a diet rich in garlic.
Garlic Chili Sauce: Featuring chili peppers and garlic, this spicy sauce may help to lower cholesterol levels and to promote good blood circulation.
Lemon/Lime: These citrus fruits contain citrus bioflavonoids, which have antioxidant properties and are active in improving the function of the immune system. They also have anti-microbial properties and are a good source of a number of nutrients including, vitamin C, potassium, and folate. The fruits’ bioflavonoids may also function as anti- inflammatories and lower blood pressure and cholesterol.
Olive Oil: This type of oil contains numerous antioxidant polyphenols in addition to monounsaturated oleic acid. Both help support fat metabolism and cardiovascular health. Studies suggest a healthy combo of olive oil and fish oil (omega 3s) can work together in maintaining a pro-inflammatory/anti-inflammatory balance.
Onions: Onions contain a number of flavonoids, one being quercetin (found in Juvenon’s Youthful Energy). This nutrient has been demonstrated in studies to protect the liver, cool the fire of inflammation and has anti-cancer properties. Quercetin may help in weight control by reducing fat synthesis and increasing fat burning.
Thai Fish Sauce: This condiment is derived from fish that have been allowed to ferment. It is an essential ingredient in many curries and sauces. Used like salt in Western cooking and soy sauce in Asian cooking, good-quality fish sauce imparts a distinct aroma and flavor all its own. It is high in protein and contains a rich supply of B vitamins, especially B 12 and pantothenic acid, riboflavin and niacin.
Michelle Nowicki has a Bachelor of Science in Food and Nutrition, completed a dietetic internship at Yale-New Haven Hospital, and has a graduate degree from Yale University.